Operators of the venerable King Air 200 can now bring their avionics up to date. Kitchener Aero Avionics is offering a digital cockpit upgrade for the King Air 200. While Kitchener offers the full G1000 cockpit suite upgrade, it also offers a more cost-effective retrofit package that includes the dual Garmin G600 flight display system with Taws-B, replacing the standard heavy-iron avionics suite that originally came with King Air 200s.
Sennheiser’s updated active noise cancellation HMEC 26-2 headset adds comfort, noise protection and a higher sound pressure level to the HMEC 26. To improve the fit for a wider variety of pilots, Sennheiser redesigned the two-piece automatic headband so it can be opened another 20 degrees. Restricting folding of the ear cups to a 45-degree angle improves wearing stability. The microphone boom is made of a new steel that remains in the set position more securely, according to Sennheiser.
Satcom Direct has signed an agreement with Honeywell to be a distributor for the Inmarsat GX Aviation Ka-band service, for which Honeywell itself is a value-added reseller. The Florida-based communications specialist will also be a distributor of GX avionics equipment. The service is scheduled to be commercially available early in 2015 and is designed to offer “consistent, high-capacity broadband coverage around the world.” For example, users should be able to stream Internet content live or hold uninterrupted video calls from 30,000 feet.
Bombardier’s new Challenger 350 will feature an upgraded flight deck, the Rockwell Collins Pro Line 21 Advanced system, which will also be available as a retrofit on Challenger 300s. New capabilities include synthetic vision, Fans 1/A, ADS-B out, CPDLC, RNP basic and authorization required and LPV guidance. The Rockwell Collins MultiScan threat-detection system radar will also be available for both the Challenger 300 and 350. MultiScan reduces pilot workload by automatically identifying weather and turbulence.
Wireless loading of avionics data is coming to Honeywell’s Primus Apex and Epic avionics suites, beginning with the Pilatus PC-12 NG. For the PC-12 NG the new wireless data loading system requires installation of an Aspen Avionics CG100P connected gateway device. In aircraft equipped with Epic avionics, hardware upgrades built into the aircraft’s avionics will facilitate wireless data loading, but a common interface for all Honeywell avionics suites will be a database loading application installed on Apple’s iPad.
With the new Xplore system Arinc Direct is jumping into the market for small portable Iridium-powered onboard communications devices that use Apple’s iPad as the control/display unit for cockpit and cabin data services.
Xplore is a small box, two inches thick and no larger than an iPad, that users will carry onto the aircraft, thus no installation of an avionics unit is required. Xplore needs to be attached to power and to an external dual Iridium/GPS antenna to enable communication with Iridium satellites.
The era of the Airfone air-to-ground radiotelephone system comes to an end on December 31 when Aircell, the new owner of the Airfone network, plans to shut the service down. Aircell purchased the Airfone network from LiveTV earlier this year and will use the Airfone frequencies to expand and meet growing demand for its Gogo and Gogo Biz airborne broadband Internet services. The Airfone frequencies are adjacent to those used by the Gogo service.
The Airbus Corporate Jet Center (ACJC) has become the first completion center to install and activate a global communication suite (GCS) on a single-aisle Airbus. According to the company, Panasonic’s Ku-band antenna provides “superior” performance at high latitudes and in the equatorial region, with the Internet support necessary to operate an office or provide robust entertainment. Using only a single antenna, ACJC’s unidentified Middle Eastern client will be able to watch real-time TV from all over the world, enjoying the same type of entertainment at 35,000 feet that he would at home.
Airbus has chosen the ACSS T3CAS traffic management computer as the standard surveillance avionics suite for the Airbus single-aisle narrowbody family of aircraft (A318, A319, A320 and A321). T3CAS combines–in a single LRU–key surveillance avionics, including traffic alert and collision avoidance system (Tcas), terrain awareness warning system (Taws), Mode S transponder with automatic dependent surveillance-broadcast (ADS-B) OUT and also ADS-B IN functions (airborne traffic situation awareness). T3CAS is also available on the A330, according to ACSS (Chalet A306).
Rockwell Collins (Hall 2B D108) is launching a family of products designed to give helicopter pilots better situational awareness when flying in congested and hazard-filled airspace. Called HeliSure, the family’s first two products, Helicopter Synthetic Vision System (H-SVS) and Helicopter Terrain Awareness and Warning System (H-Taws), have been selected by AgustaWestland for its AW149, AW189, AW101 and AW169 helicopters.